Congratulations to SIPS Extension Support Specialist, Dawn Dailey O’Brien on receiving this year’s Distinguished Arborist Award at the New York State Arborists Conference on January 26-27. Dawn was recognized for her efforts in the creation, publication, and promotion of Cornell’s Branching Out: An IPM Newsletter for Trees and Shrubs, now in its 27th year of publication.
Presenting the award, SIPS Professor Emeritus George Hudler recounted how he and Dawn began work on Branching Out in the early 1990s, with Dawn initially volunteering her efforts and later on taking charge of all aspects of the newsletter including advertising, processing subscriptions, statewide scouting, and publication. In 2012, Dawn was instrumental in producing the booklet Branching Out: Features from the Past for the Future made up of 135 newsletter features. Branching Out was recognized by the New York State Associate of County Agents as the best new extension publication when it first appeared, and it has since received numerous accolades from readers. George and Dawn received the 2009 Excellence in IPM award for its continued publication.
Dan Gilrein, Extension Entomologist in Suffolk County NY and newsletter contributor commented, “Branching Out is especially valuable for the local reports including those from Dawn’s regular observations from scouting sites around the state, diagnostic lab updates, information on invasive insects and plant pathogens, and technical feature articles written in understandable language with practical applications in mind.” He added that Dawn deserves much of the credit as it is she “who collects the information, sets deadlines, arranges layout, edits content, coordinates subscriptions and donors – in short makes sure the publication happens”.
The New York State Arborists, International Society of Arboriculture Chapter, Inc. is an association of professional arborists and educators that promotes public interest, fosters research and education in the care and benefits of trees, shrubs and their environment. 375 subscribers currently receive hard copies of Branching Out, while over 1300 members of the NY State Turfgrass Association receive electronic access as a benefit of membership.